The company, Anna-Kitex, has reportedly fielded candidates from its platform called “Twenty20”.

In Leftist bastion of Kerala private companys candidates to contest panchayat pollsImage for representation: Source; By Rama, via Wikimedia Commons
news Sunday, October 25, 2015 - 10:41

Seemingly tired of the interference from the panchayat into their activities, the Anna-Kitex Group of Companies, one of the largest private sector companies in Kerala, has fielded 19 candidates in the upcoming local-body polls.

The company has put up candidates in all the wards in the Kizhakkambalam village panchayat of Ernakulam district, where the company is based.

The garment manufacturing group claims that its aim is the development of the panchayat, while rivals allege that they want usurp power for their business interests.

The company has reportedly fielded candidates from its platform called “Twenty20”, and the election is to be held on November 5.

"We formed the Twenty20 in 2013 to implement our CSR initiatives. However, political parties were trying to spoil our initiatives by using the power of the panchayat. We want to make Kizhakkambalam village a model panchayat by 2020. Our group is the single largest source of tax for the panchayat,’" Anna-Kitex Group managing director Sabu Jacob, who is also the chief coordinator of Twenty20, told The Indian Express

However their rivals have said that "They want to gain control of the panchayat for the smooth operation of their company."

"We had denied licence to them, citing contamination of water and wetlands. By gaining control of the panchayat, the group wants to have the final say in such matters,” Jolly Baby, President of the panchayat, told TIE.